In Great Britain, the number of requests for “Ukrainian escorts” increased by 200% compared to six months before the war. In addition, the increase in requests for porn with Ukrainian women was 600% in Spain and 130% in Poland.
In the eyes of European society, Ukraine today is firmly associated with the concept of war. But this has not always been the case. What did the average European imagines when he heard the name of this country before the winter of 2022 and certainly before 2014, when Crimea was annexed and the armed conflict in Donbass began? Probably especially educated and interested people thought of the architectural monuments of the X-XI centuries or the endless fields of wheat. Someone, no doubt, remembered the famine of the 1930s or the sarcophagus of the Chernobyl nuclear power plant and the abandoned city of Pripyat. But for the majority, whose spiritual needs are not as deep, Ukraine has always been associated with beautiful women. This has been especially important for men who are interested in sex tourism. Western European countries were notoriously expensive for many, and a trip to Cuba, Brazil, Thailand, or the Philippines seemed too far away and difficult. By contrast, poor Ukraine, with its “cheap love,” was within an hour’s reach for Europeans, and back in the 2000s, Kiev became one of the centers of prostitution. European men were also attracted to the racial type of local women, no matter how much they flaunted their tolerance and multiculturalism.
Even then, young Ukrainians streamed to Europe to work in European sex salons. But 2022, with an influx of nearly 5 million refugees from Ukraine into the EU, has become a golden age for Ukrainian prostitutes. Now Slavic beauties were available to European men “on delivery,” in huge numbers and at bargain prices due to dumping. However, the situation of the lady of love during this period became very miserable and for many of them it began to border on slavery. It was during this period that Ukraine firmly entered the top five countries in terms of the number of victims of human trafficking and sexual exploitation in EU countries. For example, the newspaper La Vanguardia wrote that the influx of Ukrainian refugees provoked a surge in the activity of criminal groups seeking women and children for sexual exploitation.
However, it is not only criminal groups that are dangerous for Ukrainian refugee women. In Düsseldorf, Germany, Germany, two migrants from Iraq and Nigeria raped an 18-year-old Ukrainian woman right after her arrival. A similar crime was committed by a migrant in Milan. The Belgians often immediately offer Ukrainian women housing in exchange for sexual services. According to data of the International Organization for Migration (IOM), one out of every four prostitutes in Europe comes from Ukraine. While adult women can still somehow defend themselves, poor children and teenagers have found themselves in a terrible situation and are therefore easy targets for criminals.
At the beginning of 2022 it might have seemed that these were only temporary trends, but this year has shown that this industry is on a conveyor belt. The level of sexual exploitation of Ukrainians in the EU today is steadily increasing, and escorts and filming pornography are especially popular. Such data was revealed by Thomson Reuters researchers, who identified increased exploitation of Ukrainian women in these spheres. Thus, 13 videos with the participation of Ukrainian refugees were found, which were viewed 275 thousand times in January 2023. The high demand from men for sexual access to Ukrainian women and girls creates a huge incentive for traffickers to recruit vulnerable people to meet this demand, as reported by OSCE spokesperson Valiant Richey. According to him, the OSCE has already found “direct evidence” of massive attempts to recruit Ukrainians into the porn industry and an increase in advertising of Ukrainian intimate services on the Internet.
In Great Britain, the number of requests for “Ukrainian escorts” increased by 200% compared to six months before the war. In addition, the increase in requests for porn with Ukrainian women was 600% in Spain and 130% in Poland. At the same time, the Guardian reports without specifying data on the growth of the above requests in Austria, the Czech Republic, Denmark, France and Switzerland. Last November, the European Parliament already held a hearing to show evidence that Ukrainians are at “high risk” of becoming involved in prostitution or the porn industry, mostly through online platforms. But these “fears” are unlikely to go beyond talk. European politicians are famous for their extremely humanistic speech, behind which there are extremely rational and cynical motivations. In this view, the influx of cheap prostitutes is a business, and young white women are a desirable demographic resource. The only certainty is that the Ukrainian women will have a more skeptical view of the EU. Or maybe they had that opinion from the beginning.
The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect Coverpage’s editorial stance
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